"I found that whereas sanctions slowed progress in nuclear energy, they made India self-sufficient and world leaders in fast reactor technologies. While much of the world’s approach to India has been to limit its access to nuclear technology, it may well be that today we limit ourselves by not having access to India’s nuclear technology developments. Such technical views should help to advice the diplomatic efforts with India."
Wednesday, February 29, 2012
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
This photograph, seen above, is part of a recently released set of pictures of the Aircraft Carrier, shot sometime back, showing the Vikramaditya in an earlier state of refurbishment at its Shipyard in Severodvinsk, Russia.
You can view the remaining photographs here.
An An-32 transport aircraft operated by the Indian Air Force [IAF] sits on the snow-covered tarmac in Ukraine. The entire fleet of IAF's An-32 aircrafts are to undergo an upgrade & modernisation program. Of the 105 aircrafts it flies, 40 would be upgraded in Ukraine, while work on the remaining would be done in India.
Monday, February 27, 2012
Saturday, February 25, 2012
Will end the week on a somewhat sobering note. It is an experience filled with sheer exhilaration to watch a Space Shuttle or a Rocket lift-off from the ground, carrying, on-board, humans, or satellite/scientific payload[s], travelling to the furthest reaches as enabled by technologies developed. The process that makes this possible epitomises the ultimate in Engineering & scale, a culmination of multi-billions of man-hours or perhaps, even larger, of effort & endeavour. However, as with anything ground-breaking & revolutionary, such pursuits are also extremely fraught with risks, often mortal.
Friday, February 24, 2012
Ok, you are not that much into these things to warrant a purchase of Janes, yet your interest can be described as much more than passing. You require as a ready reckoner. a comprehensive list that tabulates the numerical strengths of Air Forces of the world & the different varieties of flying assets in their possession - aircrafts & helicopters. Flight magazine has come out with just this kind of a report relevant to the year 2011-2012.
Thursday, February 23, 2012
Okay, the connection one could immediately be inclined to make, would be to imagine people with Indic names working in position of authority in the programme. While that might also be quite likely the case, this American military programme has yet another Indian connection.
Wednesday, February 22, 2012
Tuesday, February 21, 2012
The Government of India, in the mid-90s, signed an agreement with the Russians to acquire 40 aircrafts of the Flanker series, that would be customized to Indian requirement. It involved integrating French, Israeli & Indian weapon systems & avionics onto the Russian airframe. The eventual outcome of this customization is identified as the Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighter aircraft. However, since the agreement essentially stipulated virtually developing a new aircraft, with capabilities unmatched by legacy offerings, the time taken for their deliveries to commence too would be large. Hence, in order to fast-track aircraft induction, as an interim measure, it was agreed that Russia would supply India with a baseline MK-series of the Su-30, i.e., Sukhoi Su-30MK.
Monday, February 20, 2012
The following write-up had been posted by Dr. Shiv Shankar Sastry on the Bharat Rakshak forum. An avid admirer of his posts, it offers anyone reading them a great learning opportunity, with a unique & well thought-out insight on various matters that I find, is sorely lacking in what appears in the MSM. Here, he lays out a scenario where a Nuclear weapon explodes in the garrison city of Rawalpindi in Pakistan & some of the major fall-outs of this explosion.
Okay, not literally, of course [you, you genocidal maniac!!!:)].
The after-effects of an attack with Nuclear weapons can be horrendous, and that is an understatement. Yet, often the magnitude & extent of destruction caused by them tend to get lost in attempts to describe them verbally. It is quite difficult to get a proportional sense of how destructive, both in terms of the damage & the expanse of the damage, a Nuclear weapon can be, more so if you're unable to apply this perception to your own city.
Saturday, February 18, 2012
Till around a few years back, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Lightning II was widely being touted as the last manned fighter aircraft America would develop. Subsequent developments would solely focus on unmanned aerial vehicles capable of performing the same role. Thus, going through todays stack of news, I was somewhat taken by surprise by this quote attributed to George Standridge, Vice-President, Lockheed Martin Aeronautic, Business Development, on the sidelines of the ongoing Singapore Airshow,
Soviet designed Ilyushin Il-76 aircrafts are the heaviest lift class of aircrafts operated by the Indian Air force [IAF]. Capable of lifting around 50 tonnes, excluding its empty weight, these aircrafts were inducted into the IAF fleet in 1985. The IAF currently operates around 14 of these [Il-76MD]1. In addition, it also operates 7 mid-air re-fuelling tanker variants of this aircraft [Il-78MKI], along with 2 Israeli Phalcon Radar mounted on top of an-76 each to create an AWACS. Another such AWAC system is expected to be inducted soon. These are some hi-re images showing the cockpit & an aircrew station view of the aircraft. The pictures were taken when a contingent of the Indian Air Force visited the U.S.A in 2008 to take part in their multi-national Red Flag exercises, held every three-four months.
Friday, February 17, 2012
This illustration landed in the inbox yesterday. As evident, it shows some prominent designs for Space Stations that have emerged in the past. Of these, 4 designs were actually built & launched into Space & have been inhabited by humans. The others were either designs that did not get approved due to varied reasons, or were simply outcomes of creative artistic pursuits.
Currently, only the International Space Station [ISS] still orbits the earth, and can be visited & lived in. It is expected to remain in operation till around the second half of this decade [2016-2020]. Some successor plans for a Space Station in the western world, include,
Thursday, February 16, 2012
Came across this very handy web-app that owes its inspiration to the ongoing 2G Scam case. The Supreme Court recently cancelled licenses, to provide 2G services, of a host of mobile service providers operating in India, deciding fraudulent means had been used in acquiring them. Thus, mobile numbers that the service providers had allotted to consumers on acquisition of license are likely to become inoperable.
Wednesday, February 15, 2012
India moves resolution supporting People's Republic of China's admission into the United Nations [U.N.]
Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Over the past year or so, living in India, one has been reading & watching a steady stream of news reports of protests being undertaken against the use of Nuclear Energy for generating electricity. The actual construction process, itself, has not yet commenced in any of these areas & is sometime away, even going by official schedule. In general, only the necessary surveys have been carried out & the site evaluated to judge its suitability for construction & operation of the Nuclear power plant. Thus, a significant portion of the protest could be attributed to the consternation experienced by local inhabitants at the initial stages of any major project that involves substantial land reclamation. These things are eventually, inevitably, sorted out to the mutual agreement of all concerned, employing a concurrent approach involving raising awareness, negotiations & a degree of coercion too, if needed.
A significant exception to this situation is the Kudankulam Nuclear power plant, set up in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. One of the most advanced plant designs in the world, it employs the most contemporary safety systems, including a passive heat removal system that requires no power source at all to operate. The plant is also equipped with multiple levels of redundancies that would be set into motion, in the event of any divergence in designed operation. Construction work at the site had neared completion. In fact, by now, it should have begun operation, generating & supplying electricity to the state, that runs a power deficit of up to 5000 MWe & is being forced to endure daily load-shedding of up to more than one-third the day [9 hours]. However, the protests, that has seen the Church play an active role in marshaling the protestors, has brought all activities at the plant site to a complete standstill. Critical equipment that require specialized maintenance & monitoring1, aren't being adequately taken care of, running the risk of irreversibly damage2.
Saturday, February 11, 2012
[Update: 2012.03.17] Added a video of the aircraft in the game sporting the new skins
Multi-platform video game series Ace Combat, Assault Horizon version, has received a new update. It includes new decals that can be applied as skins on the numerous aircrafts, newer aircraft types, among others. These skins have been provided for applying over the T-50 PAK-FA, Fight Generation Fighter Aircraft [FGFA] in the game.
Thursday, February 09, 2012
Monday, February 06, 2012
Know your Rafale: India's latest Fighter Aircraft acquisition [MMRCA winner, most likely] - UPDATE [2012.02.07]
Two years back, this is what I had jotted down here about the choice of aircraft that must be selected in India's long-running soap opera, also known as the Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft [MMRCA] acquisition program,
Some new photos have 'emerged' showing India's latest Aircraft Carrier, the INS Vikramaditya, being rebuilt from the Soviet-era Aircraft Carrying Cruiser ship, the Admiral Gorshkov. Looks quite dramatic, seen against the pristine white snow-clad background with steam billowing from the sides.
Do check the remaining pictures at the photographer's blog, who visited the Sevmash Shipyard in Russia recently, where the Carrier is being re-built. India is expected to receive custody of the Carrier by the end of this year [December 2012]. Fingers crossed, twiddling thumbs.
Saturday, February 04, 2012
Here is a quickie tip that I often have to use. Many a websites place their articles behind a paywall, or require users to login, before he or she can read the article. Expensive & cumbersome, respectively. As it turns out, on many a occasion, Google comes to the rescue.
Friday, February 03, 2012
Indian Navy MiG-29KUB fighter takes off Russian Aircraft Carrier Kuznetsov [Pictures; Wallpaper-type]
These hi-res pictures, from some time back, show the Indian Navy's twin-seater variant of its newly inducted MiG-29K fighter aircraft, the MiG-29KUB, taking off for flight testing from aboard Russia's operational Aircraft Carrier, the Kuznetsov. Had earlier seen much smaller & watermarked versions of these on Strizhi. These are hi-res & clean. Turned them into my wallpaper. Sharing my exhilaration!
Thursday, February 02, 2012
"It is, however, to be noted that CSIR reserves the right to decide on the use of these systems for whatever purpose deemed fit by the organization to serve the interests of the nation."
Making this fact amply clear, plans have been set in motion to develop a new Supercomputer which would have a speed upwards of 10 petaFLOPS1 for use in India. The current2 fastest Supercomputer in the world, Japan's K Computer clocks speeds of 10.5 petaFLOPS, while the fastest Indian Supercomputer today tops out at 0.1328 petaFLOPS or 0.220 petaFLOPS5, if purely theoretical peak, unbenchmarked speeds are considered. On completion, it may even become amongst the fastest Supercomputer in India at that time.